Thursday, April 23, 2015



When I am feeling better, exploration is the name of the game.

While there are about three places I can think of I'd like to go back to (visit with friends in Romania, an apartment I've got in Bulgaria and some friends I need to visit in Macedonia) there is one in Asia that I really enjoyed - Dani's in Bali, Ubud, Indonesia.

After getting sick, and because eastern Europe may still be 'too damned cold' and since I was in Asia anyway, the signs pointed to going there to rest and try to get my strength (as it were) back.

Fuck winter.

After sleeping on a box spring (no mattress) for several days in the dull town of Krabi, Thailand I decided it was time to say goodbye to my new friend Chris.  I'd gotten a rather good interview with Chris that will hopefully make an appearance in this blog soon.

It was then time to do the 5 AM wake up - after the drinking with Chris and some Thai expats until 1 AM, of course.

The alcohol I was drinking was not nearly this pretty.  It was shitty red wine mixed with diet Coke.

Didn't hear my normal alarm but fortunately the new cellphone (and my usual paranoia) saved me.

Managed to get up on time, pack a few remaining things and head downstairs to wait.

Eventually, some privately owned car pulled up across the street.  I greeted him and asked who he was looking for.  "My boss."

Fair enough.  Later, I asked him if he was going to the airport.  "Yes."

Taking his boss to the airport.  Sounds great.  Sure wish the guy I'd already hired through the hotel - and paid for - would show up.  He was fifteen minutes late so far and I didn't have a lot of wiggle room on this one.

I even flashed my ticket at the guy waiting for his boss but he shook his head.

Twenty minutes after the scheduled pick up time I said "Fuck it".  I wasn't going to let $200 of tickets slide down the drain due to the usual incompetence often found in Asia.  I began negotiating with a tuk tuk driver who was cruising around looking for work.

He then asked the guy waiting for his boss something...and it turns out this guy was waiting for me.

I had told him I was from the hotel, asked where he was going, telling him I was also going to the airport and even flashing the ticket at him he had to collect in order to get paid.

So.  He's retarded.

If Dr. House says it, everyone loves Dr. House.  If I say it, I'm an insensitive prick.  Like Dr. House.

At least he knew where the fucking airport was.

Not kidding.  This sort of thing happens all the time in Asia.  As is said by many long term travelers I've run in to "there is a reason their country is poor".

Sorry for sounding like I joined the USA's Republican Party there.  Fear not, I will not be trying to shame the poor.  It's just when people have done something for a long time - even if it is stupid - they often keep doing the same crap over and over.  I know I do.

So I make it to the airport on time.

The flight on the extremely cheap (good value) AirAsia is uneventful going from the grubby airport at Krabi (that town really has nothing to recommend it) to the massive airport at Kuala Lumpur.  The Malaysians also managed to not lose the plane from Kuala Lumpur to Bali.

Logan was thrilled to survive.

According to things read on wikitravel, the fare from DPS (airport code of main airport at Bali, ie 'where you will arrive') it costs 200,000 IRP (Indonesian rupees) to leave that town and head to Ubud.  Oh, the offers I had.  500,000 IRP on up.

I scoffed at them, told them not to talk to me and often walked away.  This is part of the game.

Eventually, found a guy who would not go down to my 200,000 but would go for 250,000.  [Edit:  According to Dani, this was the correct price.]

Remember, the guy who can speak English you find at the airport is often not the person who will actually be driving you - they are just the tout.

After getting passed off to his minion, we leap frogged through traffic for about half the time they claimed the trip would take before making it to Ubud.

Once here, I got to see my new accommodation.  Not nearly as nice as the room I stayed in last time but Dani does work hard to make things work and make you feel welcomed.

After fighting his broke assed internet (he doesn't know much about computers and the internet is a new thing for him) for half an hour I finally got back online.  [Edit:  The government blocks downloading sites and such.  Be sure to stock up before you come to Indonesia if you want to watch movies and such.  They also seem to block proxy stuff.  Unfortunate.]

It looks like a lot of things will be working out here.  Long time readers may recall that when I started to travel I got to travel with Pete and Jana through a couple countries outside England.  Pete, who had never traveled outside of Australia has become a fairly avid traveler.  He will be here.  Barry and Kim, friends I'd met last time in Ubud Bali - also here.

So it should be a nice trip!


Although I am still currently recovering from Dengue, I would like to assure everyone I am still dry humping statues whenever the opportunity...arises...

Plus, it is always a complete waste of time for both parties unless they are already in agreement.


Chris' bottle collection


Interview with Chris

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{{2011}} London, GB | Rail N Sail | Amsterdam, Netherlands | Prague, Czech Republic | Budapest, Hungary | Sarajevo, Bosnia | Romania | Chisinau, Moldova | Ukraine: Odessa - Sevastopol | Crossed Black Sea by ship | Georgia: Batumi - Tbilisi - Telavi - Sighnaghi - Chabukiani | Turkey: Kars - Lost City of Ani - Goreme - Istanbul | Jordan: Amman - Wadi Rum | Israel | Egypt: Neweiba - Luxor - Karnak - Cairo | Thailand: Bangkok - Pattaya - Chaing Mai - Chaing Rei | Laos: Luang Prabang - Pakse | Cambodia: Phnom Penh | Vietnam: Vung Tau - Saigon aka Ho Chi Minh City

{{2012}} Cambodia: Kampot - Sihanoukville - Siem Reap - Angkor Wat | Thailand: Bangkok | India: Rishikesh - Ajmer - Pushkar - Bundi - Udaipur - Jodhpur - Jasalmer - Bikaner - Jaipur - Agra - Varanasi | Nepal: Kathmandu - Chitwan - Pokhara - Bhaktapur - (Rafting) - Dharan | India: Darjeeling - Calcutta Panaji | Thailand: Bangkok - again - Krabi Town | Malaysia, Malaka | Indonesia: Dumas - Bukittinggi - Kuta - Ubud - 'Full Throttle' - Gili Islands - Senggigi | Cambodia: Siem Reap | Thailand: Trat | Turkey: Istanbul | Georgia: Tbilisi

{{2013}} Latvia: Riga | Germany: Berlin | Spain: Malaga - Grenada | Morocco: Marrakech - Essauira - Casablanca - Chefchawen - Fes | Germany: Frankfurt | Logan's Home Invasion USA: Virginia - Michigan - Indiana - Illinois - Illinois - Colorado | Guatemala: Antigua - San Pedro | Honduras: Copan Ruinas - Utila | Nicaragua: Granada | Colombia: Cartagena | Ecuador: Otavalo - Quito - Banos - Samari (a spa outside of Banos) - Puyo - Mera

{{2014}} Peru: Lima - Nasca - Cusco | Dominican Republic | Ukraine: Odessa | Bulgaria: Varna - Plovdiv | Macedonia: Skopje - Bitola - Ohrid - Struga | Albania: Berat - Sarande | Greece: Athens | Italy: Naples - Pompeii - Salerno | Tunisia: Hammamet 1

{{2015}} Hammamet 2 | South Africa: Johnnesburg | Thailand: Hua Hin - Hat Yai | Malaysia: Georgetown | Thailand: Krabi Town | Indonesia:
Sabang Island | Bulgaria: Plovdiv | Romania: Ploiesti - Targu Mures | Poland: Warsaw | Czech Republic: Prague | Germany: Munich | Netherlands: Groningen | England: Slough | Thailand: Ayutthaya - Khon Kaen - Vang Vieng | Cambodia: Siem Reap

{{2016}} Thailand: Kanchanaburi - Chumphon | Malaysia: Ipoh - Kuala Lumpur - Kuching - Miri | Ukraine: Kiev | Romania: Targu Mures - Barsov | Morocco: Tetouan

{{2017}} Portugal: Faro | USA: Virginia - Michigan - Illinois - Colorado | England: Slough - Lancaster | Thailand: Bangkok | Cambodia: Siem Reap

{{2018}} Ukraine: Kiev - Chernihiv - Uzhhorod

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